Thursday, November 10, 2011
One player to watch
By Bill Williamson
One player to watch from each AFC West team in Week 10:
Denver Broncos, Willis McGahee, running back: McGahee, 30, is coming off a huge game in the Broncos’ Week 9 win at Oakland. He had 163 yards on 20 carries and had touchdown runs of 60 and 24 yards as Denver came back from 10 points down at halftime to beat the Raiders by 14 points. McGahee is averaging 4.5 yards a run this season. He has been a strong free-agent addition for the Broncos and he will be a key for them at Kansas City on Sunday.
Kansas City Chiefs, Jon Baldwin, receiver: Baldwin needs to find consistency. He was terrific in Week 8 against San Diego, but he had just one catch in Week 9 against the Dolphins. The rookie is just learning the NFL game. I’m sure the Chiefs will give him plenty of chances Sunday against Denver. The key for Baldwin is to progress weekly.
Oakland Raiders, Denarius Moore, receiver: The rookie clearly is building chemistry with new Oakland quarterback Carson Palmer. The fifth-round pick was targeted 12 times in Palmer's first start Sunday and had four catches. Moore had slumped in recent weeks -- having just five catches in his previous four games. But it appears Palmer will give him plenty of opportunities, beginning Thursday night in San Diego.
San Diego Chargers, Antonio Gates, tight end: Gates is coming off a strong game where he had eight catches for 96 yards and a score against the Packers. It will be interesting to see how Gates responds to playing on a short week, against the Raiders. He had played the past three games after missing three games with a nagging foot injury. Gates usually rests some during the week, and he hasn’t been practicing on Thursdays. This week, it's a game day.